Well, this isn’t a good look for Bernie Sanders. He is telling the American people they deserve $15 per hour for a minimum wage but allegedly can’t pay his staff the same. Now his employees are reportedly fighting back.
The Washington Post reported, “Campaign field hires have demanded an annual salary they say would be equivalent to a $15-an-hour wage.” The outlet also says, “A review of emails, instant messages and other documents obtained by The Post show that the conflict dates back to at least May and remains unresolved. The documents were provided to The Post on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the private talks.”
The Sanders campaign released the the following statement today, “We know our campaign offers wages and benefits competitive with other campaigns, as is shown by the latest fundraising reports. Every member of the campaign, from the candidate on down, joined this movement in order to defeat Donald Trump and transform America. Bernie Sanders is the most pro-worker and pro-labor candidate running for president. We have tremendous staff who are working hard. Bernie and I both strongly believe in the sanctity of the collective bargaining process and we will not deviate from our commitment to it.”
It’s not clear how much his staff is being paid now.
This isn’t Bernie’s only hiccup. Back in April, he had Black women voters exacerbated during his appearance at the She the People Presidential Forum in Houston. That debate continued in a major way Sunday when one of Sanders’ top campaign staffers, a Black woman, defended the Vermont senator’s appeal to the coveted demographic.
But that appeal was uncertain after Sanders, one of eight Democratic White House hopefuls at the event billed as “the first-ever Presidential candidate forum focused on women of color,” was asked about his plan to stem the rise of white nationalism. The Vermont senator’s familiar refrain that he once marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. elicited groans, jeers and boos, suggesting the audience wanted to hear new talking points instead of those from the 2016 election.
Former Ohio Sen. Nina Turner, who is Sander’s campaign co-chair, appeared on the AM Joy show on MSNBC Sunday morning and cited statistics to show the senator was support from the vital voting bloc of Black women.
But Joy Reid, host of the show, and Dr. Jason Johnson, another panelist, begged to differ and said Sanders squandered the perfect opportunity for him to bolster his support from Black women voters. They both said Sanders failed to answer the question and instead relied on tired talking points that don’t move the dial on the conversation about white nationalism in America.
Watch the full exchange below.
Back in February, Sanders was in the middle of a CNN town hall event when a Black woman in the audience asked him about his stance on reparations. But the 77-year-old, who has been a bit iffy (some might say he’s flip-flopped) on the topic, further blurred the lines when he ended his very noncommittal answer by stating, “It depends on what the word means,” he said.
His multitude of past racial blunders — remember when he said that white people who didn’t vote for Stacey Abrams “are not necessarily racist” because they felt “uncomfortable” voting for a Black candidate? — have also been far from a good look for Sanders.
Nevertheless, Sanders was still in second place in the most recent Democratic presidential nomination poll published by NBC News.